After almost a week of glorious winter days with temperatures over 20C the weather has turned. We have woken to a cold snap. Reminding us that Spring may be around the corner but we still have a little way to go. Time for a casserole, I’ve always loved Boeuf Bourguignon. Perfect fare for a cold Winter’s day. Rich, hearty and warming. Here is the much loved French classic reinterpreted with a twist. An East meets West fusion of meltingly tender beef in a rich aromatic red wine miso sauce. Shiitake mushrooms and leek replace the more traditional champignon and pearl onions. The miso paste adds an interesting depth of flavour to this dish. Umami, the sixth taste, as the Japanese would say.
Beef Bourguignon With Miso and Shiitake Mushrooms
2 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
1.5kg beef blade steak, trimmed, cut into 3-4 cm cubes
2 tablespoons flour, seasoned with salt and pepper
1 large brown onion, finely chopped
200g shortcut rindless bacon, halved lengthways, cut into 1cm strips
4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 long red chilli, finely sliced
5cm knob of ginger, peeled and finely grated
3 celery ribs, finely chopped
2 cups red wine
1/2 cup beef stock
2 tablespoons mirin
4 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon sweet miso paste
2 carrots, trimmed into 2cm lengths
2 leeks, trimmed into 2cm lengths
3 sprigs thyme
200g small swiss brown mushrooms, whole
200g shiitake mushrooms, whole
PREHEAT oven to 180C.
HEAT 2 tablespoons oil in a large, heavy-based casserole style pan over medium-high heat.
PLACE beef in a large bowl and sprinkle over seasoned flour. Toss well to combine. Sear beef, in batches, for 5 to 6 minutes or until browned. Set aside and keep warm in a separate bowl.
REDUCE heat to medium. Add remaining oil to pan. Then add brown onion, celery and bacon. Cook, stirring, for 5 minutes or until onion is soft and translucent.
ADD garlic, chilli and ginger. Cook for another minute or so until fragrant.
DEGLAZE the pan with red wine. Return the beef and its juices to pan. Stir well to combine, then add stock, mirin, soy sauce and miso paste. Bring to a gentle simmer before adding carrots, leek and thyme.
PREPARE a baking paper cartouche and fit snugly over the casserole, replace the lid and place the pan in the oven,middle rack position. Braise until beef is tender, about 2 1/4 to 2 1/2 hours. Remove thyme.
ADD mushrooms. Stir to combine. Return to oven and cook, covered, for 30 minutes or until meat and mushrooms are tender.
SEASON with salt and pepper. Serve with mashed potato.